Today marks the first day of Spring — it’s about time! Not that we don’t like winter, but it’s nice to see the sun peeking through and to have longer daylight hours. One thing we hear a lot from our clients is that they feel like they hibernated all winter and now need to detox for spring. The most powerful way to detox your body is to support your body’s detox organs (skin, kidneys, liver…) with consistent healthy eating. Here are some of the best ways to support your body’s natural detox power.
Sip on green: Green tea (and white, black, and oolong) is packed with antioxidants. In the case of green tea, recent studies suggest sipping on the drink several times a day may lower the risk of cancer and even help protect our blood vessels by making them more flexible and less likely to get clogged. It may even give you a weight loss boost and help lower “bad” LDL cholesterol.
Love those lentils: Lentils pack in both types of fiber, soluble and insoluble, which help your body sweep waste products out on a regular basis. But lentils also bring lots of iron to the table. Iron makes up part of hemoglobin, which transports oxygen to all of your body’s organs and tissues to make sure that they are functioning at their best.
Get your 4-5 (cups of veggies and fruit): Women should aim for 1.5 – 2 cups of fruit and 2.5 cups of veggies each day. Men, aim for 2 cups of fruit and 3 cups of veggies. You’ll get a trifecta of detox power from this food group: antioxidants, fiber, and water. You can’t go wrong noshing on fruits and veggies, so make an effort to meet your daily quota by filling half your plate with fruit and/or veggies at most meals.
Pass the “lemonade test”: The best way to tell if you’re properly hydrated? Check your pee — if it looks like pale lemonade, you’re likely getting enough water. Does it look more like apple juice? You need to hydrate. Every system in your body depends on water to function properly. It carries waste from your kidneys, allows the transportation of nutrients to your cells, and keeps the tissue of your intestines, ears, nose, and throat moist.
Don’t overeat — even the healthy stuff: While we always recommend you opt mostly for whole foods that you cook at home, overeating any type of food puts undue stress on your body. Sure, walnuts or dried apricots are a super healthy, nutrient-packed snack choice — but if you eat a cup of each, you’ve nearly met your calorie needs for the day! In order to eat the right amount for you, stick to the hunger scale (eat when you feel hungry, stop eating when you’re satisfied but not stuffed, and don’t let yourself get into the famished zone between meals). Keeping a food journal and working with a registered dietitian are also fantastic ways to make sure you’re eating the right amount of the right stuff.
Do you feel like you need to detox for spring? How will your diet and lifestyle change with this new season?